Master of Public Administration

Degree Program

The accelerated Master of Public Administration Distance Learning program is offered by CSULB's Graduate Center for Public Policy and Administration in partnership with the College of Professional and Continuing Education (CPaCE). The convenient format of the distance learning MPA, which uses synchronous online instruction, allows working professionals to complete the program in a short period of time without career interruption. This innovative learning opportunity features web-based, real-time, interactive sessions with students and faculty.

This program is designed to provide a diverse student population with the professional competencies necessary for leadership and management roles in public service, and in community-based and nonprofit organizations. The program emphasizes the theory, practice, skills, and ethics necessary to promote excellence in public service management.

Program participants proceed through a sequence of pre-selected courses as a learning team. The course components are delivered online in weekly online synchronous sessions. In addition to these weekly synchronous sessions, students will also attend an online synchronous session on the first and last Saturday of each course. These synchronous online sessions are also complemented with asynchronous instruction via Canvas. 

Health and Human Services

Graduate Center for Public Policy and Administration

Network of Schools of Public Policy Affairs and Administration

Please Note:

  • Students enrolled in this program are eligible for some forms of financial aid, with the exception of the State University Grant (SUG) and Cal Vet College Fee Waiver.  
  • GI Bill benefits can be used for this program. Click here to learn more about eligibility, rates, and other details.
  • Out-of-state students who do not reside in California are not eligible to enroll in this fully online program. For more information, visit The National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA).


  • Accredited program
  • Six-week sessions and courses offered in a sequential accelerated format
  • Cohort learning team
  • Courses taught by CSULB faculty with years of academic and professional experience
  • Complete the program in as few as 22 months
  • Degree offers a blend of leadership and management expertise
  • Professional network of over 1,700 CSULB MPA graduates in Southern California and the nation
  • How to lead public and nonprofit organizations
  • Skills and techniques to manage human resources
  • Financial management and budget analysis techniques
  • How to define and solve practical problems in the public sector
  • How to communicate effectively with diverse individuals and groups
  • The roles of public and nonprofit sector organizations in American government
  • How to structure and manage complex public and nonprofit organizations

The MPA degree requires 39 semester units of graduate course work. Students are required to have a computer with web access (broadband access preferred) and a current web browser.

A minimum of 24 units of 500/600 level courses in PPA, 15 units of elective course work, and the completion of the student learning portfolio.

  • PPA 500, Foundations of Public Policy and Administration
  • PPA 555, Government Budgeting and Finance
  • PPA 577, Public Sector Personnel Administration
  • PPA 660, Seminar in Organization Theory and Behavior
  • PPA 670, Seminar of Policy Issue Analysis
  • PPA 696, Research Methods in Public Administration
  • PPA 697, Directed Research
  • PPA 535 Intergovernmental Relations
  • PPA 570, Negotiating Dynamics: Strategies and Skills
  • PPA 512 Urban Executive Management
  • PPA 540 Grants Administration
  • PPA 610, Seminar in Urban Affairs